Food companies should be careful what they name their products. That marketing tip has become painfully clear to Death Wish Coffee Co., which brands itself as the “world’s strongest coffee.”
This week Death Wish Coffee began recalling all of its 11-ounce Nitro Cold Brew cans because the drink could pose a risk of botulism. Oops!
Botulism is a serious and potentially deadly illness caused by the botulism toxin. Because the company does not really have a death wish for its customers, Mike Brown, the founder and owner of Death Wish Coffee, said in a statement, "Our customers' safety is of paramount importance and Death Wish Coffee is taking this significant, proactive step to ensure that the highest quality, safest and, of course, strongest coffee products we produce are of industry-exceeding standards. We apologize for the inconvenience this may cause our customers and our retail partners, but we believe this is the right precautionary measure to take."
Botulism is caused by a nerve toxin made by the bacterium, Clostridium botulinum. The company said it determined that its current manufacturing process for the cans could lead to the growth of the bacteria that produce the botulism toxin, which can occur in low-oxygen and low-acid foods.
Fortunately, no illnesses have been reported with the recalled coffee. The Round Lake, New York-based company says its coffee contains more than 700 milligrams of caffeine per 12 fluid ounces, which is twice the recommended daily limit of 400 mg.